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By Victor Davis Hanson, Townhall, July 30, 2020
Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author ….
Cultural suicide used to be a popular diagnosis of why things suddenly just quit.
Historians such as Oswald Spengler and Arnold Toynbee cited social cannibalism to explain why once-successful states, institutions, and cultures simply died off.
Their common explanation was that the arrogance of success ensures lethal consequences. Once elites became pampered and arrogant, they feel exempt from their ancestors’ respect for moral and spiritual laws like thrift, moderation, and transcendence.
Take professional sports. Over the last century, professional football, basketball and baseball were racially integrated and adopted a uniform code of patriotic observance. The three leagues offered fans a pleasant respite from daily barroom politics. As a result, by the 21st century, the NFL, NBA and MLB had become global multibillion-dollar enterprises.
Then hubris ensued. ….
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